hugstamp

Dear little South African girl who was saying goodbye to her granny and grandpa at the Atlanta Airport. You put on such a brave face until they gave you that last, heartbreaking, wave and disappeared around the corner. Your tears told us how sore your heart was. Your sad little face touched everyone around you. I think the whole airport wanted to give you a hug. I drew this picture for you. I hope it helps a little.

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Someone asked me over coffee recently what I considered the most valuable lesson I learned on my travels.

Without hesitation I told him the most important thing I learned was that the fact that, no matter what happens, there is ALWAYS seems to be hope.

On the way home from coffee, I turned on the radio and every channel I listened to was negative. I heard about…

One political party bashing another.

One religion bashing another.

One celebrity bashing another.

Sports fans bashing opposition teams.

DJ’s laughing about someone’s misfortunes.

I read a few articles on the Internet that day and the comments under the articles sent a shiver down my spine. Most comments under any article were downright horrible.

I read about…

People being so rude and hurtful without shame.

People viciously putting others down.

People making vile racist comments.

People drooling with hatred for everything and anything they don’t agree with. Like the putrid comments under You Tube videos. (How can people get so worked up and nasty about whether the Eagles are a better band than the Doobie Brothers or Metallica better than Iron Maiden? If the people who post those comments spent all the time and energy they do hating each other and volunteered instead, the world would be a better place.)

I turned on the TV after that and saw footage from the various terrorist attacks around the world.

I saw people being stoned because they had been the victim of rape.

I just couldn’t stand it!

So, I turned off the media and went to the Children’s Hospital close to where I live and visited some kids with cancer.

And I SMILED because I saw…

Families supporting each other.

Kids making every moment that they’re alive, COUNT.

A child with cancer comforting another child who was throwing up from her chemo.

A bald kid moon-walking down the hallway singing, “I’m bad, I’m bad,” at the top of his voice!

Two teens with cancer, who are dating, swooning, loving on each other and planning their future because instead of saying 20 percent of kids with cancer don’t survive they are saying 80 percent of kids with cancer DO survive!

Make no mistake. At the hospital I saw a lot of pain and suffering, but unlike what I saw, heard and read in the media, in the Cancer ward, more than anything, I saw…

Hope.